From the news desk

Capetonians brace for bitterly cold, wet and windy weekend

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Hold on to your umbrellas, because it’s going to be an extremely wet and wild weekend in the Cape.

The South African Weather Service (Saws) has issued a severe weather warning for the cold front that was expected to descend on the Cape peninsula on Thursday night.

A trifecta of heavy rains, gale force winds and high seas are expected to make for stormy conditions throughout Friday. And if the wind and rain don’t provide enough of a battering, the cold front will be followed by even colder polar air sweeping over the province, bringing widespread snowfall.

According to Saws, there will be a “cold airmass moving in from the deep south behind the cold front”, which will see maximum temperatures drop to below 10°C in the interior of the Western Cape.

“The advection of this cold airmass could lead to freezing levels dropping to the height of the mountain ranges during Friday, which could result in snowfalls on the western and southern mountains of the Western Cape.”

Coastal winds are expected to reach gale force speeds with wave heights predicted to be between 6-8m on Friday, with possible localised flooding along the shoreline.

“The high wave heights along with the strong to gale force winds along the coast will cause sea conditions to be destructive and dangerous,” according to Saws.

Mayco member for safety and security, JP Smith, said the City was prepared to respond to weather wreaking havoc. “The city’s services will closely monitor and respond appropriately to mitigate the impact of the cold front expected to make landfall late last night,” Smith said.

Anyone in Cape Town experiencing flooding or a weather-related emergency can call the Public Emergency Contact Centre at 107 from a landline (free call) or 021 480 7700 from a cellphone.

Gautengers will also face the full wrath of winter this weekend.

Saws said that cooler weather conditions are expected to reach the province by Saturday night.

According to forecaster Vanetia Phakula, this will see a drop in temperatures which will set in on Sunday.

“Temperatures in Joburg on Sunday are expected to drop to around 15 degrees, while in Pretoria it will be about 16 degrees.”

[Source: Cape Argus and The Star]
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